Tobacco Use Prevention

Everyone deserves the opportunity to live tobacco-free.

Many tobacco users did not fully understand the harms of tobacco when they started using it. And, many current tobacco users want to quit. People who do not use tobacco products have the right to breathe tobacco-free and smoke-free air. NCAH’s policy priorities aim to increase funding for and access to tobacco use prevention and cessation programs and services, and implement other evidence-based tobacco control policies.

 

Priorities

  • Promote policies that support the implementation of an effective Tobacco 21 law in North Carolina, including retailer licensing
  • Promote increased and recurring appropriations for robust and evidence-based tobacco prevention and cessation programs and services
  • Promote a significant increase in excise taxes on cigarettes, e-cigarettes, and all other tobacco products in parity

NCAH will also support other mission-related policies as they arise, as approved by NCAH members.

Want more information? Tobacco Use Prevention and Cessation Resources can be found here.

Prevention and Cessation

Tobacco use prevention and cessation programs and services are critical to reduce tobacco use in North Carolina, and are key components of comprehensive tobacco control efforts. Education campaigns and access to cessation services like QuitlineNC are becoming even more important as e-cigarette use continues to rise.

The Goal

NCAH advocates for recurring state appropriations for robust, evidence-based tobacco use prevention and cessation programs and services.

Our Progress

Over the past few years NCAH has successfully begun to restore funding to tobacco use prevention and cessation programs and services.

NCAH has secured more than $2.75 million in nonrecurring funding for prevention programs and $750,000 in recurring funding for cessation programs since 2016. However, not all funding was implemented due to budget vetoes.

Tax

Increasing taxes on tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, remains a crucial piece of robust tobacco control policy efforts. North Carolina’s current cigarette tax is one of the lowest in the country. Raising North Carolina’s cigarette tax, and its tax on other tobacco products, is essential to reduce tobacco use in the state.

The Goal

NCAH advocates for an significant increase in excise taxes on cigarettes, e-cigarettes, and all other tobacco products in parity.

Our Progress

NCAH was founded to advocate for an increase in North Carolina’s cigarette tax, which was increased by $.35 in 2005.

NCAH continues to look for opportunities to increase the cigarette tax as well as taxes on other tobacco products, including e-cigarettes.

Smoke-Free and Tobacco-Free Places

Smoke-free and tobacco-free places protect the public from secondhand smoke exposure. They also motivate tobacco users to quit. NCAH continues to support localities in expanding their smoke-free and tobacco-free policies to the greatest extent possible, given the preemptive policies put in place by the NC General Assembly.

The Goal

NCAH advocates for evidence-based policies that protect public health by eliminating exposure to secondhand smoke.

Our Progress

NCAH’s most significant success was the passage of the smoke-free bars and restaurants law in 2009, which made all bars and restaurants in North Carolina smoke-free.

NCAH has also helped implement smoke-free policies in other places, including the NC General Assembly building, state government buildings, and local government buildings.

NCAH also seeks to repeal preemption to allow localities to implement smoke-free and tobacco-free policies that are more restrictive than currently permitted.

Tobacco 21

In late 2019, the federal government passed a law raising the minimum legal age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21. While this law is being implemented in North Carolina, some changes are required to North Carolina’s own youth access law to ensure the effectiveness of raising the age.

The Goal

NCAH advocates for policies that support the implementation of an effective Tobacco 21 law in North Carolina, including retailer licensing.

Our Progress

This campaign is underway in response to the federal change made a the end of 2019.

E-Cigarettes

E-cigarette use, especially by youth, has risen exponentially in recent years. E-cigarettes are categorized as tobacco products in North Carolina. NCAH’s tobacco use prevention and cessation efforts also include specific messaging and focus on the dangers of e-cigarette use.

The Goal

NCAH advocates for recurring state appropriations for robust, evidence-based tobacco prevention and cessation programs and services.

Our Progress

Over the past few years NCAH has successfully begun to restore funding to tobacco use prevention and cessation programs and service, including e-cigarette use.

E-cigarettes are tobacco products under North Carolina law. NCAH advocates for e-cigarette use prevention and cessation as part of broader tobacco use prevention and cessation campaigns.